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Mayfield should have been in Daytona

By admin | July 6, 2009

By Richard Allen

On July 1st Jeremy Mayfield was granted an injunction by a federal judge that, at least temporarily, gave him the right to race in NASCAR. However, he did not take advantage of the ruling. He did not make an appearance at the Daytona International Speedway during the weekend of the Coke Zero 400.

In my opinion, Mayfield should have made an appearance. I understand that his team is in disarray and him making the race in the #41 car would have been next to impossible. However, the injunction would have allowed him to be there, racing or not.

The injunction also stipulated that NASCAR will be allowed to test him at anytime. It would have been to Mayfield’s advantage, in my opinion, to have been there and to willingly submit to a test by not only NASCAR but from a third party as well. If he is indeed clean, he would have passed the test. That would have assured other competitors that they had nothing to fear racing with him on the track.

Mayfield claims that the cause of his failed test was a combination of the allergy drug Claritin-D and the Attention Deficit Disorder drug Adderall. He says he took an extra dosage of Claritin in Richmond, where his sample was drawn, because his allergies were particularly bad there. If he has not had any allergy flare-ups since, then there should not be the same problem with further testing.

As Jeff Burton stated during one interview this past week, one problem is that the test does not provide immediate results. By taking a test this past week, the results would have been known by the time everyone arrived in Chicago. That way, no driver would have to answer questions as to whether or not they were leery of racing with Mayfield on the track.

Also, making the effort to be there and willingly submitting to a drug test would have scored Mayfield a major public relations victory. Granted, such a victory would mean virtually nothing in a court of law. However, painting one’s accuser into the bad guy corner adds pressure to that side to make absolutely sure they have their case in order.

Knowing NASCAR is almost certainly going to seek an appeal of this judge’s ruling, Mayfield could  have landed a knockout blow to their case with a clean drug test.

Had he been in Daytona, Mayfield would have had an opportunity to appear on the pre-race show and let everyone see that he is not some wild-eyed drug abuser.

I am no lawyer, and I’m sure Jeremy Mayfield was listening to one this past weekend, but it seems to me that had he traveled to Daytona he could have regained the trust of his fellow drivers and scored a public relations coup in the process. For that reason, I believe Mayfield should have been in Daytona.

Richard Allen is a member of the National Motorsports Press Association. His weekly column appears in The Mountain Press every Wednesday.

Topics: Articles |

4 Responses to “Mayfield should have been in Daytona”

  1. bart Says:
    July 7th, 2009 at 7:12 am

    I am really confused by this whole situation..but to call Mayfield out because he didn’t go to Daytona seems unjustly silly. If he is having money problems like he states .. the money spent on a trip to “wander around” Daytona would be better spent on getting his car ready for the next race. You say he should be there to be tested..why hasn’t NA$CAR ordered a hair sample..why hasn’t Mayfield gone to an independent lab and had one done? It is my understanding..not sure…but a hair sample would show if he has been a user of drugs for the past months…so it seems a prudent thing to do to help his care..or for NA$CAR to help theirs?? If NA$CAR can order tests at their whim..whey aren’t they doing it daily now?????? For NA$CAR or Mayfield to rely solely on the botched tests of a couple months ago..and not retest over and over is mind blowing to seems it would clear alot of things up?????

  2. The Old Guy Says:
    July 7th, 2009 at 9:06 am

    My old mind is foggy. But, didn’t the drivers refuse to race with Tim Richmond at one time? I think they did and I don’t remember the outcome of that.

    Would the drivers band together and refuse to race with Mayfield? I’m not real sure what I would do. If he did race, I know I’d want to steer clear of him until his guilt, or innocence, was cast in stone.

  3. midasmicah Says:
    July 7th, 2009 at 2:09 pm

    Mayfield was right for not going to Daytona. It would have been a media circus. The Mayfield issue would have over shadowed the race and he didn’t want that. Respect that stand. No matter what move he seems to make, he can’t win. If he goes there he’s being selfish. If he doesn’t go there he’s avoiding the very issue that got him in he position to begin with.

  4. Julia Says:
    July 8th, 2009 at 8:16 am

    If he really did fail because of the 2 drugs he said he took, why can’t he just repeat exactly what he did when he failed? Why can’t he just take the two drugs exactly like he said he did, take a drug test during the same time frame as he did the 1st time, and have a differnet lab do the test. If he is telling the truth 100% like he is saying now, the results of that test will be exactly the same as the 1st time. That would settle everything for all. Why can’t he just do that. If I were him, that is exactly what I would do.